Tuesday, 20 November 2018

Castles (9) : Tamworth

Tamworth is a well preserved example of a Norman motte and bailey castle though was built on the site of earlier Saxon fortifications. The original castle was made from wood in the years following the Norman invasion. It was rebuilt from stone while under the ownership of the Marmion family. When the Marmions turned against King John in 1215 he ordered the castle destroyed. The castle destruction was halted after John's death and the damage repaired. The Marmions were restored to royal favour and Henry III visited the castle in 1257.

The castle had a number of additions as it passed to the Ferrers family especially during the Elizabethan period with the castle being made more suitable for habitation than war. During the Civil War it was captured by Parliamentary forces and used as a garrison. The castle changed ownership a few times in the following centuries, fell into disrepair but was restored. It was finally bought by the Tamworth Corporation in 1891 and remains a council owned museum and tourist attraction with well preserved interiors.